Baton Rouge Attorney Joseph K. Scott, III Coaches High School Mock Trial Team

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Attorney Joseph K. Scott, III coached Episcopal High School's team for the fourth consecutive year. The team of students prepared and delivered cases before a judge and mock jury of attorneys.

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"While many of the students are not specifically interested in attending law school, the training they receive by competing in mock trial is invaluable," said Scott, an attorney/coach for Episcopal High School.

The Baton Rouge Bar Association sponsored the Region III Mock Trial competition for local high schools on February 17-18, 2017. Student teams from East Baton Rouge and the surrounding nine parishes learned about the law and our legal system in this hands-on competition held annually at the 19th Judicial District Court in downtown Baton Rouge.

The student participants are all given the same hypothetical case and prepare for both the plaintiff and defense’s side, which is presented before a judge and mock jury of attorneys. Local volunteer attorneys and teacher coaches spend weeks preparing these high school students for their “day in court.” Baton Rouge attorney Joseph K. Scott, III along with local attorneys Chip Marionneaux and J. Cullens have now coached the Episcopal High School team for the fourth consecutive year. The Episcopal High School of Baton Rouge Social Studies Department sponsors the mock trial team, and teacher Vincent Hoang is the club’s director.

“While many of the students are not specifically interested in attending law school, the training they receive by competing in mock trial is invaluable," said Scott, an attorney/coach for Episcopal High School. "Students learn analytical skills and develop proficiency in public speaking and constructing well-supported arguments. These students are generally going into professional careers where these same skills will give them an edge in the boardroom, closing sales, or witness depositions.”

Episcopal’s team starts planning towards the end of the fall semester, meeting several times before the holiday break. In January, they begin to meet twice a week in 2-hour sessions to strategize, practice, develop technical knowledge and work on their presentation. Episcopal typically enters two or three teams in the competition. Each team must be prepared to present the plaintiff’s (or prosecution’s) case as well as the defense’s case since they never know which side they will be presenting before the judge and jury.

This year the school fielded two teams, one of which advanced to the third round and once again impressed the judge and jury of attorneys with their presentation skills and knowledge. Several local high schools have a mock trial elective course, and the students have a full semester of actual class time to devote to training for the competition.

“Episcopal is lucky to have three successful litigators willing to take the time to work with these young people, but when we compete against schools using a full semester curriculum, progressing beyond the opening rounds has proved difficult. However, these students really enjoy the competition, and it’s a great pleasure to watch their skills develop,” Scott.

Students who win the Region III competition progress to compete at the state level in Monroe, La., in March and the National Competition that is being held this year in May in Hartford, Conn.

Scott went on to say, “I thoroughly enjoy working with this bright, energetic group of young people who continue to impress me with their hard work, perseverance and dedication. I know they will go on to achieve great things.”

The Region III Mock Trial Competition is a youth education program of the Baton Rouge Bar Foundation and is financially assisted by the Louisiana Bar Foundation’s Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Account (IOLTA) program. For more information or a consultation regarding Juvenile, Family, or Criminal Law, Joseph K. Scott, III invites you to visit his website at http://www.josephkscott.com or contact his office at (225) 478-1128. His offices are located at 830 Main Street, Baton Rouge, LA 70802.

Joseph K. Scott, III has maintained his private practice since 2004 and has represented several hundred clients. He is a 2002 graduate of LSU Law School and was a member of the school's Law Review. Mr. Scott has written many articles on criminal law for the Louisiana Bar Association magazine and is a speaker on juvenile and family law. Mr. Scott has lived and worked in the Baton Rouge area for the past 18 years.

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